Sunday, August 24, 2008
Pure raw genius, a master of his instrument. Listen to his sublime playing on Weather Reports; “ A remark you made “ The way the bass carries the melody is pure bliss.
His use of harmonics & those flurries of 16th notes coupled with the tone of his fretless Fender Jazz bass make his playing instantly stand out from the rest of the pack.
He announced his arrival with his solo album "Jaco Pastorious" with the opening cut “Donna Lee “ a cover of Birds Be Bop classic. He made most forms of bass playing redundant overnight & dragged the instrument out of the shadows and in to centre stage with that one track.
He had it all & could lay down an incessant pumping groove when required, always adding a new harmonic dimension to any track he played on.
Plagued with Bi Polar syndrome, fuelled with drugs & alcohol, Jaco never stayed around long enough to fulfill his potential. A real shame, even worse was his death, beaten to a pulp by a bouncer outside a night club, an ape who never realised what talent he was taking from the world, as he pounded Jaco’s head repeatedly on on the road outside, causing so much damage that one of jaco’s eyeballs was smashed from the socket.
Often underrated, never boring and always serving the song in his approach to his playing with Crowded House. You listen & think you can anticipate the next note then you are surprised by the way his playing twists around the melody of the track with out losing the essential feel of the piece. Not bad for an Australian.
He may come from the pretentious arty side of town but there is no doubting his unique sound & ability with a bass guitar. If you isolate what he is playing from the rest of the track it seems to make no sense at all, until you hear the whole piece. His approach is always from left of centre which adds another dimension. Within the context of the song everything he plays fits perfectly.
The first bassist I ever heard who made me sit up & listen. His work with Free who he joined as a sixteen year old was brilliant. He never restricted himself to the bottom of the neck like many traditional player's at the time, preferring to fill Free’s sparse sound out with harmonics, high end fills & chords. I saw him play live at Leeds Town hall with a three piece band consisting of Drums, Keyboards & Bass. They played a Bluesy rock set & Fraser took all the solo’s on bass. Never once did it sound at all out of place. Listening to him solo on a bass guitar through a wah wah pedal was breathtaking. In later years Andy has come out of the closet & been diagnosed with aids, his legacy not restricted to his bass playing includes songs such as “All right now”, “every kind of people “ as well as songs for Frankie Miller, Chaka Khan & others.
Mixes of 10 or so vocal tracks spreading from 2005 to today in an effort to finish them. I hate mixing !!
Outrageous Fortune season 4